Phil Sharp is Britain’s most promising up and coming offshore yachtsman. He claimed victory in the 2006 edition of the notorious Route du Rhum solo transat race, and recently finished the 2011 Solitaire du Figaro as the highest Brit in the history of the race.
Phil comes from a sailing family and has sailed on yachts from a very young age. He first started racing at university where he captained the Imperial College Sailing Team for his final two years, skippering the team to victory in Cowes Week 2003. After graduating from university, he then raced in the Mini 650 racing circuit for the next two years with much success.
In September 2005, Phil competed in the Mini Transat, a single-handed race from France to Brazil in 21ft boats considered to be one of the toughest offshore races. After taking 4th place in Leg 1 down to Lanzarote, Phil’s hopes of a top finished were dashed at the start of the second leg when he took wrong weather routing advice and ended up in 58th position after the first few days at sea. He then made one of the biggest recoveries in the history of the race and sailed through the fleet to claim 6th place in the Leg 2. This give him 4th place overall, the second best British result in the 30-year history of the race.
For 2006, Phil chartered a Class 40 boat for October’s Route du Rhum, a solo transat from St Malo to Guadeloupe. After intense downwind conditions, Phil hooked up the lead of the 25-strong fleet after the first week, seeking out a violent low pressure system to the North. Despite losing a valuable sail in a storm, Phil fended off his rivals to cross the finish line victorious in 18 days, 10 hours and 21 minutes, and a whole day ahead of second placed Gildas Morvan.
Phil’s goal is clear: to be the first Briton to win the famous Vendée Globe. This race is the pinnacle of the sailing world: non-stop, around the world, single-handed, without assistance.
"More people have been to space and scaled Everest than have raced single-handed around the world, which highlights the sheer challenge and scale of this demanding event. It is the ultimate competitive challenge in the world today; a test of outright endurance, commmitment and perseverance over three months, driven intensely by the desire to win."
" I believe that with the appropriate backing and a competitive boat I can be the first person to break the French dominance of this event and take the title to Britain. That would be a great way to raise the profile of offshore sailing and also bring this incredible sport to the public's attention in the UK."
11 May 1981
Jersey, Channel Islands
Imperial College London
MEng (Hnrs) in Mechanical Engineering
Metal, Rock, Cheesy classics
Windsurfing, Triathlon, Skydiving
Offshore Class Experience
Class 40, Mini 650, Figaro, Volvo 60/70
Inshore Class Experience
49er, F18, Extreme 40
Winning the 2006 Route du Rhum
• Seahorse International Sailor of the Month – Sept 2011
• Seahorse International Sailor of the Month – Jan 2007